I finally found another internet cafe that is configured to take our USB photo thingy! I have a horrid cold and no voice but otherwise we are well. Toby has decided he likes learning spanish which is a good thing since they started with full morning lessons today. Dave and another guy from Sweden have now joined our class previously of two and significantly ratcheted up the level. Vicky (from England) and I are struggling!! This weekend we did two cool excursions. We went Saturday to El Explorador - a totally wacky garden with found objects, piped classical music, play things, inspirational sayings and flowers. The kids loved it. Sunday we hired a cab to take us to the end of the road below Volcan Baru to the ranger station where the Quetzals trail started. You need 4wd to get there and then hike a very rough road for acouple km then join the trail. Beautiful cloud forest, towering trees, wild epiphites, wild green parrots, rushing rivers, mud, sun, sheepherders. We just finished reading Heidi and the first part of the hike was almost like Switzerland - sheep, herders huts, pine trees, flowers, then you drop ontot the otherside where it turns into cloud forest with thick trees and lush undergrowth. Mostly indigenous folks work up in the mountains (Ngobe Bugle). The kids did great with the hike which took almost 4 hours and involved getting Cassidy´s new red shoes totally mud coated (minor fit here). Unfortunately, the hike did me in and my cold set in for real. Here are some pictures from the hike and garden and our house.
from Toby; "We went to the Explorador, we saw funny things there . there was some sewing machines which had faces which were funny. We went to the mi jardin es su jardin, and there was cool bridges shaped like golden gate bridges but you couldnt drive on them you could only walk.there was wooden sculptures and a little salted sea village which had been recovered from water. and there was a tunnel covered with vines. this is back to cassidy
from Cassidy "I had fun at the Explorador. There was a little science cab. I had so much fun on the swings. we played billy goat gruff on the bridges.